National Geographic Traveler
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Africa Travel Planner Intro
North Africa
West Africa
East Africa
South and South-Central Africa
Deciding When to Go
Calculating Currency Exchange
Learning Local Languages
Determining Time Differences
Making Telephone Calls
Planning Your Safari
Taking Public Transportation
Packing Your Suitcase
Clearing Customs
Dining Out
Finding a Place to Stay
Staying Healthy
Staying Safe
Saving Money
Photographing Africa
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Scenes from a Kenya Safari

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Staff writer George W. Stone shares photos and more from his Africa adventure.
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Africa Travel Planner

Dining Out

"Africa offers a culinary feast," says Jennifer Lawson, who produced a TV series on Africa for National Geographic. Don't just stick to the Western-style food served in reputable hotels. Know, and try, the regional specialties. "North Africa, for example, has excellent French fare and heavenly couscous," says Lawson. "East Africa offers German and Indian foods as well as great local lobster from coastal waters. South Africa offers excellent Malaysian, Indonesian, and Indian foods."

Street vendors: Don't overlook the pleasures of dining on the street. "In some cases, street vendors have achieved the vaulted status of preparing the best grilled meats, samosas (deep fried vegetable turnovers), roasted corn, or nuts in town," says Lawson. But, stick to the popular stands. "If a vendor's booth is crowded, recommended by locals, has a means of refrigeration, and is open—meaning you can see how clean it is—then it's probably safe to eat there," says Karen Cockburn, co-founder of the Africa Travel Centre.

Safaris: Meals are included in many safari packages. Advise operators of what you will and will not eat, if you're a vegetarian, or have food allergies. Most operators prepare both Western and local specialties. "The main complaint on most safaris is that the food is so good travelers wind up gaining weight," says Mike Nesbitt, founder of the African Safari Company.

Related Web Resources:

South Africa Restaurants
Links to restaurants throughout South Africa.

Veg Dining
A vegetarian's guide to dining in Africa.

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